Monday, October 23, 2017

Important: Texas Notary Education by SOS and Legislative Update (Online Notarization Peek)

In this article

--Clarifies that Typing isn't UPL
--Changes Address / Journal Requirements for Signers
--New No Can Do - Using Certain Words in Foreign Language
  • Online Notarization is Coming - Here's a peek


To the Texas Secretary of State -- Thank You!

Thank you for this amazing six-video collection of educational videos and an update on legislation, plus a peek at online notarization.  Thanks to all the participants, including my friend Kathleen Butler from the American Society of Notaries

Brenda Stone & Members of

Education for Texas Notaries 

Six 2017 Notary Public Conference Presentations


Legislative Update for Texas Notaries

Watch the Videos & Download Slides
One of the six videos is at this link.  I have watched and summarized what our notary public administrators had to say.

SB 2065 – Law Update -  Deceptive Trade Practices Act - Effective Now (as of Sept. 1, 2017).  

The new law doesn't change the part highlighted in purple, except to add the word "or admission" to (2).

Notaries, of course, still can’t represent themselves as lawyers and many other things.  See blue print in (a)(1)-(5) below.
Added by new law:  Notaries cannot use terms immigration expert or immigration consultant in a foreign language.  See brown print in (28).

The new law specifies (see highlighted in green) that
Typing services are not considered UPL
Translation IS NOT considered UPL

SECTION 2.002.  Section 406.017, Government Code, is amended
by amending Subsection (a) and adding Subsection (a-1) to read as
       (a)  A person commits an offense if the person is a notary
public and the person:
             (1)  states or implies that the person is an attorney
licensed to practice law in this state;
             (2)  solicits or accepts compensation to prepare
documents for or otherwise represent the interest of another in a
judicial or administrative proceeding, including a proceeding
relating to immigration or admission to the United States, United
States citizenship, or related matters;
             (3)  solicits or accepts compensation to obtain relief
of any kind on behalf of another from any officer, agency, or
employee of this state or the United States;
             (4)  uses the phrase "notario" or "notario publico" to
advertise the services of a notary public, whether by signs,
pamphlets, stationery, or other written communication or by radio
or television; or
             (5)  advertises the services of a notary public in a
language other than English, whether by signs, pamphlets,
stationery, or other written communication or by radio or
television, if the person does not post or otherwise include with
the advertisement a notice that complies with Subsection (b).
       (a-1)  A person does not violate this section by offering or
providing language translation or typing services and accepting

Best Practices Recommended
Come to an agreement in advance with any signer you will meet with about any fees you'll be charging.
Itemize your fees on a receipt. 

Immigration Consultant/Expert in Foreign Language - New No Can Do

SECTION 2.001.  Section 17.46(b), Business & Commerce Code,
as amended by Chapters 1023 (H.B. 1265) and 1080 (H.B. 2573), Acts
of the 84th Legislature, Regular Session, 2015, is reenacted and
amended to read as follows:
       (b)  Except as provided in Subsection (d) of this section,
the term "false, misleading, or deceptive acts or practices"
includes, but is not limited to, the following acts:
(28)  using the translation into a foreign language of
a title or other word, including "attorney," "immigration
consultant," "immigration expert," "lawyer," "licensed," "notary,"
and "notary public," in any written or electronic material,
including an advertisement, a business card, a letterhead,
stationery, a website, or an online video, in reference to a person
who is not an attorney in order to imply that the person is
authorized to practice law in the United States;


Mailing Address for Signings - Journal Update

You may use the signer’s mailing address or work address and do NOT have to put down the address that you see on their Driver License.
You must provide a certified copy of your record book entry upon payment of fees.  (Just modernized the words.)

Online Notary Legislation

Read this - it is plain language about the intent of the new law.

You don’t have to become an online notary.
You must be a regular notary to become an online notary.

There will be costs--
Fee to register with the SOS.
Pay for the software that is required.  (Didn’t say what this would be.)
Pay for the ID software that will be required. (Didn’t say what this would be.)
SOS will develop standards.
We will purchase the software from private vendors.
They will be creating ADMINISTRATIVE RULES.
We will have a chance to comment. 

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